Wednesday, 25 April 2007


I was in Lyon to see the John Butler Trio. There are concerts that you go to where you don't know the band and are pleasantly surprised or groups that you love that disappoint live and then there are the concerts that you set your hopes high, almost too high and you wonder if you are setting yourself up to be disappointed but then you go to the concert and it surpasses what you expected. Blows it out of the water. John Butler Trio would fall into that category. Le Transbordeur was a great venue. It's large enough to accomodate everyone but not too big so that it no longer feels intimate. The music was amazing and they played old songs, new songs, and threw in a quick Bob Marley song for good measure. John did a solo, instrumental piece while the bassist and the drummer (who were both fantastic as well) took a short break. It was 20 minutes. It was beautiful. My words don't do this evening justice but here is a little clip to give you a taste. This is taken from the Taratata show, I think it airs on fridays but you can always watch the full show here. I recommend it. They get all different artists on the show and it's purely music. They do brief interviews while setting up for the next band to play.

Wednesday, 4 April 2007

Sitting Pretty

Went to the movies last night. Waiting in line for our tickets there was a group of teenagers behind us lining up to see the movie Hellphone. The tagline for the film: Sans abonnement. Sans forfait. Sans pitié. Almost enough to make you see it.

But we were there to see Le Dernier Roi d'Ecosse. As we settled into our seats, I was too happy to see the subtitles appear at the bottom of the screen. It has been ages since I saw something in V.O.

What a thrilling film. It was beautiful: the music, the acting, the setting. I loved Forest Whitaker. You fall under his spell. There were some violent parts, pretty graphic but served to show the violence of Amin's regime. The best estimate, from the International Commission of Jurists in Geneva, is that it was not less than 80,000 and more likely around 300,000 were killed during his 8-year reign as president. Another estimate, compiled by exile organisations with the help of Amnesty International, put the number killed at 500,000. The total population in Uganda at that time was around 12 million. Civil unrest, mass killings, tyranny. It sure makes my life feel very plush and comfortable.